You should already be aware of the shocking news that the PGA Tour and LIV Golf announced a significant merger deal on Tuesday. We have not been told how much money changed hands, and I don’t think we will ever find out.
Even though the LIV Golf format was a little gimmicky, I didn’t mind it at all. However, the tour’s source of funding is much more problematic. The Saudi regime’s violations of human rights are despicable. The involvement of the state monarchy in LIV by funding the series through its Public Investment Fund has also been widely criticized as sportswashing.
If a player played on the LIV Golf Tour, they were barred from playing on the PGA Tour, and players who broke the rules were fined a lot on the DP World Tour (European Tour). In point of fact, the commissioner of the PGA Tour, Jay Monahan, once stated that no LIV Golf player would ever again compete on the PGA Tour while he was in charge.
Monahan uses the term “facts” quite liberally there. I would suggest that you look for the word “money.” You no longer need to live by any morals because you now have all the money you need.
However, I believe morals and the PGA Tour have always been ambiguous. The PGA Visit, is the best golf visit on the planet, and it knew it. The DP World Tour and other smaller golf tours around the world were always treated with condescension by the PGA Tour, its employees, and sycophantic commentators.
Take, for instance, Paul Azinger, a former professional on the US PGA Tour, who once said, “that other European Tour,” referring to a player’s performance on the European Tour. It was an unpretentious comment, yet it exemplified how the predominant US circuit had an outlook on different visits.
Therefore, it came as no surprise that the PGA Tour resisted vigorously when LIV Golf began in October 2021. There were a lot of reasons given for the PGA Tour’s position, but if you have been following golf and the PGA Tour’s actions, it was clear that it wanted to eliminate any threat to its position as the world’s top golf organization. The way that LIV Golf was Saudi-subsidized was not difficult to blame, yet that plainly was not the genuine explanation.
Additionally, it begs the question of whether LIV Golf star Brooks Koepka’s victory in the PGA Championship last month influenced this new contract. The world’s best golfers who switched to LIV Golf were widely regarded as past their best; however, Koepka’s victory at the PGA Championship and second place finish at the Masters put those critics to rest.
At last, Koepka’s success most likely didn’t influence the consolidation, yet having an ongoing significant hero restricted from the PGA Visit was unquestionably not a decent look.
The PGA Tour’s attempt to come out of golf’s civil war clean when everyone knows that money won in the end is, however, a worse look and positively downright dirty. And that cash is filthy.